This chili recipe is one I came up with after my husband and I started dating. I had never made chili before, but he liked it, so I set out to find something we would both enjoy. Neither of us is fond of tomato chunks or onion, and we don’t like things that are too spicy. This recipe is tasty without being too hot and it’s really easy. Chili makes a warm and hearty meal, which is especially nice on cold and rainy evenings. It can easily be made for a crowd. Even for just the two of us, I make it in fairly large amounts and store it in the fridge or freezer as it makes great leftovers.
1-1/2 to 2 pounds ground beef
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 cans tomato sauce (15 oz each)
3 cans red beans (15.5 oz each)
2 cans kidney beans (15.5 oz each)
2 cans pinto beans (15.5 oz each)
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
Brown the ground beef with the minced garlic. My husband likes big chunks of hamburger in the chili, so I try to avoid chopping it up too fine. Keep in mind that the meat will fall apart more as you simmer the chili, so you have to start with fairly large chunks if you want it to stay chunky.
Drain the meat and add the tomato sauce, canned beans, and water. I usually drain the kidney beans (they have a really thick syrupy juice), but not the others.
Stir in the seasonings. The seasonings can be adjusted to your taste. I almost never measure them. Taste the liquid, and if it still tastes like tomato, add a little more chili powder. If you accidentally add too much chili powder, no problem. Just add another can of beans.
Bring the chili to a boil and then turn it down and simmer for at least 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. If it gets too thick, add a little water. Be careful not to simmer too long. You want the flavors to mix, but you don’t want to simmer it to death or you’ll get mushy soup instead of chunky chili.
Serve hot, topped with shredded cheese, and with buttered cornbread on the side. Delicious!
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